Mental Health

How to Be Kinder to Yourself

Do you notice how mean and critical we can be to ourselves? When other people make a mistake I am much more understanding and patient with them than I am with myself when I make a mistake. Having some self compassion is a really important part of self-care and, in my opinion, it can get really overlooked. Let’s take a look at some of the ways that we can all be a little kinder to ourselves.

Celebrate Yourself

Celebrate the things that you accomplish. You’re doing great things every day. Recognize those accomplishments and congratulate yourself on them! Even if you’re having a bad day and you feel like all you did was mess up all day. Pick something you did. Recognize that you tried and let yourself know that it’s a good thing.

Nurture Your Advocate

You’re probably really familiar with your self critic. They’re the ones coming in with mean words and judgement. How familiar are you with the nicer voice in your head though. Now, don’t get me wrong, the critic can be very motivating, but they can also really bring you down. So, make sure you’re also saying nice, positive things to yourself. You probably won’t be able to completely shut your critic up and like I said, it can be helpful. So, when that voice stops being helpful to you, it’s time to become your advocate. Respond to the critic with kind words about yourself. Keep at it.

Forgive Yourself

We all make mistakes. Start forgiving yourself for yours. Failures and mistakes are apart of life. You wouldn’t berate a child (or even a friend) constantly for the mistakes that they’ve made. You forgive them, teach them, and help them move on. Start doing that with yourself! This isn’t the first mistake you’ve made and it won’t be the last. It’s okay. You’ll get better.

Treat Yourself

You don’t need to break the bank to treat yourself. Grab your go to comfort item and take a breather. Especially after a hard day. Just give yourself the opportunity to relax. Take a bath, grab a book, listen to that song that lifts you up. Now that doesn’t mean you can’t treat yourself to some retail therapy as well. Just don’t overspend if you can’t afford it quite yet.

Take a Break

If you’re able to, take a mental health day. Put everything not essential on hold for the day or even an hour. Do something that you enjoy. Be kind to yourself during that time. Recharge and prepare to tackle whatever it was that was bringing you down in the first place. It’s okay to take a breather every once in a while.

Being kinder to yourself is such an important part of self care and is so easily missed. I hope this helps you be kinder to yourself! This was especially important for me to write because I was being extra hard on myself and I also needed the reminder to be nicer.

Let me know what you think! Are you guilty of being meaner to yourself than you should be?

Thank you so much for stopping by and I’ll see you next time.

Mental Health

The Benefits of a Daily Routine

If you’re a parent, I’m sure you know that a routine is really good for your baby. It’s a lot easier to plan out your day if you now little one is going to be hungry or sleepy around a certain time. Were you aware that structuring a routine for your day will also benefit you?

As a person with bipolar disorder, a routine is especially important for me. However, it wasn’t until I had my daughter that I really got serious about a daily routine. Now that I have one, both me and my daughter are having much better days! I’m better at detecting reasons why my daughter is in a certain mood and I’m feeling more stable and am noticing changes in my mood better as well. So, today, let’s take a look at why a routine is good for everyone.

More Productive

You are going to be one of those people who gets all their work done, cooks healthy dinner, and goes to the gym! All right, maybe not right away. If you create a routine and stick to it, things will start becoming second nature. Plus, if you schedule out a chunk of time to do something, you’re more likely to do it and not procrastinate. Of course, things in life can always come up, but just structuring your day is the first step in helping you get all those things done!


When you create a routine you are helping to prioritize self-care. You aren’t going to schedule out your day and not include times to shower, relax, (and hopefully) exercise. There have been times in my life where everything got away from me. I was so wound up and busy taking care of everyone else, that I wasn’t taking care of myself. I finally took a shower and while I was still stressed, just being clean made me feel like I could keep going. A routine helps me take care of me and still take care of my family.

Good Habits

I want to be the kind of person who wakes up early, has some time to themselves for a few minutes, and then gets my kid up and ready for her day. I also want to exercise and meditate every day. When I was just “winging” my days, I never had time to do those things. I was also relying on my daughter to wake me up because I was staying up later than I should to fit in all the things I didn’t get to while she was awake.

Scheduling my days, I realize I have time to do those things during the day. I may not be at the point where my day is thrown off if I do skip an exercise day, but I’m beginning to plant those seeds and am beginning to create all those positive changes that I want.

Healthy Sleeping Habits

Sleep is so important for our bodies. When you start getting a consistent sleeping routine, your body just naturally takes to it. We’ve all had those days, when you’re supposed to be off of work, but your body missed the memo and wakes you up anyway. With a routine, you (and your body) know when to sleep and when to wake up. You’re probably also adding in some much needed relaxation before bed as well. So, getting to sleep can be easier and you should be sleeping better as well.

Reduces Stress. Increase Relaxation.

You no longer have to worry about scheduling out your hectic days right when you get up. You’re not scrambling around trying to get everything done and then somehow getting nothing done at the end of the day. Now, you have an idea of when (and how) you’re going to get everything done.

When everything is flowing and you’re going through your routine, you’re also helping yourself relax. You can minimize a lot of “what do I have to do next?” and the stress associated with that. Now, it might just be me, but seeing all of my accomplishments during the day makes me way more calm and relaxed at the end of the night.

There are some of the ways that getting yourself on a routine can help you! If you’re feeling down or in general just want to make some positive changes in yourself, start a routine! Do you already have a routine going or are you planning to start one? Let me know how you like or dislike it.

Thank you so much for stopping by! I’ll see you next time.

Mental Health, Postpartum and Beyond

Not Mine

Last week I had a difficult thought. My body is not my own.

I wake up every day and I get my daughter dressed and ready for the day. I feed her, clean the house, and play with her. Generally I’m cleaning while holding her or trying to keep her busy. I hold her until she sleeps and some days while she sleeps. I get bit, scratched, and have my attention demanded for all day. Then, I bathe her and help her to bed.

Then, my husband comes home or he’s already home, and now he wants to cuddle, be sexual, or in general just have some sort of physical contact. In general, all of those things are great. After a long day of having to care for someone else, it can make my skin crawl to even think about more physical contact at the end of the day.

I feel terrible writing it out. I’m a mom now. If my daughter or house (as in any cleaning to be done) needs something then I take care of them first. It should be easy to take care of my daughter and house all day and not feel used up at the end of the day. It’s not though. It can be draining and even violating to be constantly touched and needed by someone all day.

This is a feeling and thought that should be discussed more. It should also be normalized. I know I’m a good mom. I know I try my best every day. The days when I feel gross when someone touches me makes me feel like I’m a failure, a bad mom, and a bad wife.

I’m none of those things and if you’ve felt similarly to me, neither are you. It’s normal to feel used up after taking care of someone else all day. It’s also normal to want to not feel like sex is being expected at the end of a long day like that. If we’re cuddling or hugging (specifically my husband and I), is the butt and/or boob grab necessary?

Well, it’s okay. It’s okay if you’re feeling like you want to be in a no touch bubble. It’s okay if you don’t want to have sex. It’s okay and you’re doing good.

Remember to vocalize to your partner how you’re doing. Vocalize to a friend or family that some days you just feel exhausted of being touched all the time. A chat with your partner can help put you on a track to where you will feel sexual again. It will at least stop the unwanted grabs that instantly turn you off at least. A chat with a friend/family will help you get everything off your chest. They may even be able to related to you so you’ll know that you’re not alone in feeling like this.

To the parents feeling like their body doesn’t belong to them, you’re not alone and it’s okay. Things will get better and until they do, do not feel like you’re not good enough.

Did anyone you know warn you that you may experience any of these feelings? During my pregnancy I don’t think anyone gave me that warning. It was all just “you’re never going to sleep again” comments and general “your life will be so different”.

As always, let me know what you think! Would telling an expecting parent that these feelings may come be helpful or just scare them?

Thank you for stopping by and I will see you next time!

Postpartum and Beyond

Utilize your Village

Once to twice a week my parents will take Little P for the day. Usually Friday is my dad’s day and my mom will get Saturday or Sunday depending on her plans and what I have going on. I never thought anything of it until one of my friends pointed out that Little P is with one of her grandparents a lot. Now, that friend probably didn’t mean it in a rude way, but I’ve noticed there can be a lot of judgement thrown around when someone else is watching your baby.

I’ve seen a good number of, “you’ll never see me leaving my baby at my mom’s so I can go do *insert something here*”. I think, for the most part, the comments are directed at people who go out and party consistently or are always doing things minus the baby. To an extent, I see the party point. It would have to be close to a daily type of thing for me to start to judge it though.

It annoys me that comments are being made at all though.

Yes, I’m a stay at home mom currently, and up to twice a week, I take Little P to one of her grandparents’ houses and take the day to myself. I love my daughter with all my heart. I cherish every moment I get with her. I also cherish moments I can get away from her. That doesn’t make me a bad person or parent. It’s nice to clean, relax, and get work done without one eye suspiciously following a seven month old. I mean really, you just start doing one thing and then there’s silence? What has that child gotten into already?

I think once you have a kid people forget that you’re still your own person. You essentially become two people: you and the baby. I’ve noticed this more so with women. However, I’m speaking from experience. I don’t see why a stay at home dad wouldn’t be faced with the same struggles. “Oh, where’s the baby?”, “No baby today?”, or even “Would you like to go do *insert not baby friendly activity here*” which would be directed to the other parent.

Why are my options as a newer parent either be excluded or be judged for taking me time?

I am grateful for my daughter and all the challenges she brings. I’m also grateful for parents who allow me a day’s worth of peace. I’m a parent and that comes first, but I’m also me still. I’m still introverted and value my space. I’m still bipolar and need to take care of myself.

They say it takes a village to raise a kid and I’m happy I have a village I can utilize when I need them. It helps me to recharge and refocus. I get to come back as a better mom and partner every time I get her back at the end of those days.

If you’re a parent and you “don’t need a break” from you kids, then I applaud you. Maybe one day you’ll know what I’m talking about, or maybe you never will, but please don’t go out of your way to make someone else feel bad for taking a break from their kids. We all have our own system and ways to make life work.

All right, I think that about wraps it up for today. Let me know what you guys think! Did it feel like I was getting onto a soapbox? Can you relate?

Have a great day and I will see you next time.

Postpartum and Beyond

What I Hate about my Pediatrician

Overall, I really like my pediatrician’s office. They have an entrance for healthy kids and an entrance for sick kids. The wait times seem to get longer and longer, but I come to expect that with all doctor’s offices, so I’m pretty forgiving on wait times. There are two things that come to mind when I think about why I dislike my pediatrician.

The first, is very minor. When we took Little P in for her first office visit the doctor we saw said that she had jaundice and recommended we bring her back in a couple of days to check on how it was progressing. We came back, saw a different doctor, who basically said he had no idea what the last person was talking about. So, definitely minor, but a big old waste of my time and that was frustrating. I guess I’d rather have them be safe than sorry.

The real reason that I have been incredibly frustrated with my pediatrician is that they constantly harp about Little P’s weight. It’s also how they go on about her weight. At our four month visit, Little P had put on five pounds since her two month visit. Personally, five pounds in two months isn’t that big of a deal to me. However, we weigh her (the nurses go on about how they love a bit of a chunky baby, it’s great) and then the doctor comes in. “Five pounds, momma, wow. Five pounds momma.”

My husband is here and my husband is also taking care of and feeding our daughter. Why is it “five pounds momma”? After a multitude of shocked “five pounds momma”, the doctor then proceeded to tell us that once a baby starts moving around the weight gain tends to slow down.

This visit has seriously stuck with me as a parent. My daughter was and is still in the normal weight range. We don’t overfeed her, she dramatically coughs and gags if we try and give her a bottle she doesn’t want. Plus, she’s happy and other than the “five pounds momma” has had no issues. No matter how many times I tell myself all those things though, I hear that stupid voice “five pounds momma, wow”. On a bad day, this memory makes me feel inadequate as a parent. On a good day, it’s just a dramatic pediatrician who was surprised at a hungry baby.

It may seem really small to some people. I’m sure it doesn’t bother my husband anymore, if it ever did at all. As a brand new mom though, it’s frustrating. Why was it only my fault that the baby had gained five pounds? Why was it a big deal she gained five pounds in two months? It wasn’t a week or even one month, it was two. How was I supposed to prevent that? Not feed her even though I knew she was hungry?

It made me think that doctors can have a very narrow view of what should and shouldn’t be happening with a baby. At our six month visit, Little P had only put on two pounds. The doctor, however, still seemed hung up on the previous visit’s weight gain. She mentioned again, “Oh, once a baby’s moving around the weight gain isn’t that big of a deal”, “Oh, was she breastfed? They tend to be bigger babies”. It’s frustrating and not productive. I’d rather the doctor give advice on weight loss at this point.

If the doctor is concerned about the weight, then that’s fine. Maybe it is a big deal and I just don’t get it. That’s the point when the doctor should give advice and next steps though. Not just say, “oh five pounds, wow mom”. I also, don’t want to be the only one getting spoken to. My husband made Little P too, he makes an effort to go to every single doctor visit, don’t exclude him from the conversation.

So, there you have it. The reason (well two) that I dislike my pediatrician. Overall, the positives outweigh the negatives, so I don’t see us switching pediatricians. It just kind of gives me a reason to feel like I should doubt myself. Remember to make sure you pick a pediatrician that works for you though! You’re going to have a relationship with them for a long time, so make sure you get someone who gives you a good experience and who is competent.

As always, let me know what you think! Do you have any doctor horror stories? Or even better, any “my doctor is the best” stories?